WikiLeaks released details of a covert US hacking program on Tuesday as part of a series of seven installments that it describes as “the largest leaking of intelligence data ever.”
WikiLeaks, led by Julian Assange, had planned a press conference on the internet to present its “Vault 7” project, but later announced on Twitter that its platforms had been attacked and that it will try to communicate later.
In a statement, the Australian, a refugee at the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012, said today’s leak is “exceptional from a legal, political and forensic perspective.”
He also announced that “there is a high risk of proliferation in the development of cyber weapons,” resulting from the inability of security agencies to control them once they have created them and their “high market value.”
According to WikiLeaks, this first installment, called “Year Zero”, which exposes the systems of hacking, malicious software and cyber weapons used by the US intelligence agency, includes 8,761 documents and files, from “a network of a high security facility located at the CIA’s Cyber Intelligence Center in Langley, Virginia. ”
The leaks portal notes that it obtained documents from a person who had access to them when the CIA lost computer control over them.
WikiLeaks explains that recently “the CIA lost control over most of its arsenal of hacking, including malicious software, viruses, Trojans, zero-day attacks, malware remote control systems and associated documents.”
This collection of “several hundred million codes” gives its possessor “the full hacking ability of the CIA,” he said in his statement.
According to the portal, the collection ended up in the hands of former government hackers and other agents in an “unauthorized” manner, and one of them “provided WikiLeaks with portions of the archive.”
He adds that “Year Zero” exposes the scope and direction of the CIA’s undercover hacking program, which includes malicious arsenal and dozens of possible zero-day attacks – through software crashes – against various products.
These products include, according to the Assange portal, the Apple iPhone, Google Android, Microsoft Windows and Samsung televisions, which can be transformed into “undercover microphones”.
WikiLeaks points out that the CIA has been increasing its capabilities in the cyber fight, “with even less transparency” with the NSA, the other American security agency.
The portal also reveals that in addition to its Langley center, the CIA uses the US consulate in Frankfurt as “a covert base for its hackers in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.”
WikiLeaks says that by disseminating all this documentation, it has taken care not to distribute “loaded cyber weapons” until “a consensus emerges about the political and technical nature of the CIA program and how such ‘weapons’ should be analyzed, deactivated and published. ”
Julian Assange directed the broadcast of “Vault 7” from his residence in the embassy of Ecuador, where he took refuge on June 19, 2012 to avoid his extradition to Sweden, who claims to interrogate him about a sexual offense that he denies.